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4.8 out of 5 stars
Paid in Full [DVD]
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 21 September 2007
Wood Harris and Mekhi Phifer put in solid performances but this is a familiar story. Harris plays Ace, a working man in 80s Harlem. His delivery duties lead him to stumble across a Cuban drug trafficker who senses some potential in him and sets him up as a wholesale kingpin in the neighbourhood. Ace's quiet and businesslike approach is in stark contrast to the other neighbourhood dealers and he is successful because of it. Interestingly he resisted offers from his friends to get involved in "the game" earlier. His associates include his close friend Mitch (Phifer) and his sisters abrasive boyfriend Calvin (Kevin Carrol); both face prison time for their indiscretion. Mitch returns to the streets happy two work under Ace but Calvin's jealousy is palpable. Mitch has also picked up a trigger happy enforcer named Rico (rapper Cam'ron) during his prison time. Betrayals follow and Ace faces the inevitable repercussions of his lifestyle.

Mekhi Phifer has also played drug dealers before - his work for Spike Lee in Clockers rendered a better film than this one. Not least because the attention to detail in the drug trade was a little more closely followed and the trapped feeling that caused the characters to go into drug dealing was a lot more tangible in that work.

The fact that it is based on a real story didn't assuage the seen it all before feeling I had for much of the film. The movie did surprise me in that the 80s period details are accurate and the gangsters are often humorously portrayed rather than glamorised. As rise and fall of a criminal movies go this is not bad, but the mafia seem to have monopolised the best material. As studies of inner city drug dealing go the actors have done better work elsewhere. Paid in full is a familiar tale told with only slight flair but it was still fairly entertaining.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on 23 March 2004
This movie is one of the best urban ethnic gangster movies i have ever seen. It comes off the screen and you become a part of a world filled with drugs, fast women and death. The themes of brotherhood and unity are well adressed, there are moments in the film where you feel you personally have been betrayed. The acting by Mekhi Phifer, Wood Harris and the rapper Cam'ron is superb, when the three of them are together there is a realness and a sense of friendship between them that is hard to fault. The military mind of Cam'ron, the player that is a part of Mekhi and the adaptfull leader within Wood are brilliant to watch. When you watch these characters acting you can almost hear the characters grow. I think that this is a must have, and will go well in any collection.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 13 August 2013
Based on a TRUE story even though rocafella twisted certain bits,a classic that is timeless an shows what really goes down in the street world, Not like what rappers an other films make out . . . Closet to a street story you can get!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 14 June 2014
Very good film with good actors mekhi phipher smashed it with acting along with with camron the plot of the film was good too with gold chains bling bling and womwn I won't spoil the film I just say if u into gangsta urban film with shootups money and greed I say cop this DVD
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 March 2013
A must watch American Ganster/Action

If you like New Jack City, BlueHill Avenue, American Gangster you will love Paid In Full.
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on 30 April 2011
The dialogue and action in this movie is surprisingly very good. The film moves at a fast pace and the realistic characterizations and acting is first rate.

Most people who are well acquainted with the issues presented in the film, and those who are not so informed, will find this an enjoyable and frank narrative on the pursuit of the 'American Dream' for the less privileged urban communities in America and everywhere else the same problem exists.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 16 January 2013
Was pleased to find this DVD on here as a few years old and my partner had been trying to get a copy, arrived quickly too.
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got this out at blockbusters years ago. wasnt expecting that much but was pleasantly surprised in that its a thouroughly entertaining film that leaves you hooked from start to finish. this film should be really well known & is in my opinion one of the best films of the last 10 years and its definately in my top 20 films ever! you should buy it
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on 25 May 2015
Real good film. Based on a true story. Watched it 3 times now. Watch for snakes in your circle!
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on 26 August 2014
Good film was not sure if I would enjoy it but was pleaseantly surprised, thank you
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